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Volume 77: debated on Monday 15 April 1985

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what was the total amount of (a) supplementary benefit and (b) unemployment benefit paid to claimants in the most recent 12-month period for which figures are available; and what information he has as to the average number of claimants under each heading during that period.

A total of £5,593 million was paid to all supplementary benefit claimants and £1,497 million to unemployment benefit claimants in the 1983–84 financial year. The estimated average number receiving the benefits at any one time in 1983–84 was 1 million unemployment benefit claimants and 4·4 million claimants of supplementary benefit.